Mbabane: Worthy of note is that new senator, Jimmy Hlophe, is former member of proscribed entity, Ngwane National Liberation Congress (NNLC).
Hlophe withdrew his membership after he had been elected to represent the Mahlangantsha constituency in 2013, after defeating his opponent by a 55 vote margin on a smaller voter turnout.
Posting on Facebook, his son Andile Hlophe confirmed that his father stopped being actively involved with the party when he was elected into the 2013 parliament. Hlophe junior said a lot of the NNLC members at the time did not agree with the new senator’s stance to lobby for a parliament seat, hence he removed himself. Asked if his father’s NNLC ideology he stated that a lot has changed since then and he may not be in a position to give a comment. “What I am certain about is that he now subscribes to the school of thought that promotes a government chosen by the people and for the people,” wrote Hlophe on his Facebook page.
It was launched on 24 February 1963 founded by Dr. Ambrose Phesheya Zwane and Prince Dumisa. It had relations with Ghana as a Pan-Africanist Movement; it sent its members for political training to the Kwame Nkrumah Ideological Institute. Golden Highlanders were sent by the British Army in the early sixties due to pressure of the party’s protest actions in demanding political reforms for an Independent state and class struggle for a minimum wage. The Congress of the party on the eve of the state election of 1967 saw a clash of interest within members to an extent that we lost a margin of them to other political parties and to the state.
About the NNLC…
A breakaway party the NNLC was formed in 1972 on the eve of state elections due to failure of the President accepting a woman candidate as the Deputy President in the party’s Congress. The party won three seats out of twenty-four in the State Elections and was the first opposition to a Parliament dominated by the Imbokodvo National Movement. Bhekindlela T. Ngwenya was deported by the ruling elite on suspicion that he was not a Swazi therefore could not be a parliamentarian. This was done in total disregard of the courts of the land which ruled in his favor.
In 1973 the ruling party could not stand the NNLC as an opposition and therefore banned the party. The Leadership of the party was detained for sixty days without trial. Majority of our members that were able to escape the state forces and detention went to Tanzania, a Pan-Africanist State in which we had friendship with. After serving a long period in Tanzania the ruling class negotiated the return of the president, Dr. Ambrose Zwane. In 1997 the party reorganized itself though an Interim Committee led by Jimmy Hlophe.
The party buried its President Dr. Ambrose Zwane on 28 March 1998 in an overwhelming public support in which King Mswati III was represented. At the end of November 1998 the party had its congress in which Obed Mfanyana Dlamini, a former Prime Minister won the Presidency. In the Elections of 1999 the party opposed the country’s electoral system and boycotted the elections. Some members registered and participated in the elections. These were taken to a disciplinary hearing of which they were expelled. However in 2003 the party did not have a positional resolution on the elections of which it opened opportunities for individuals in the party to participate in the elections. The party’s President participated in the elections and won as Member of Parliament under the Nhlambeni Inkhundla. It shall be noted that the NNLC has associated its membership with the Swaziland Democratic Alliance and the National Constitutional Assembly.